Thread: Black Alge?
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Old 26-06-2006, 07:05 PM posted to rec.aquaria.freshwater.plants
Richard Sexton
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Default Black Alge?

In article ,
Bill Stock wrote:

"Jim Conklin" wrote in message
I'm having a problem with what I would call 'black alge' on my plants
and driftwood. I have a 55 gallon discus planted tank, 2.4 watts/gallon,
pH 6.2, temp 84-85F, GH 75ppm, KH 120ppm, 0 Nitrite and less then 20ppm
Nitrate. I feed the plants the usual Flourish supplements every few days.

This stuff is slimy and covers the leaves and back of the tank. It's
almost black and I clean it off with my fingers. I keep the lights on for
no more the 12 hours. Any help IDing it or suggestions on how to get rid
of it would be appreciated. Thanks!

In addition to what Dick said.

Common treatments for BBA (Black Brush Algae) are blackout, trimming
infected leaves, scrubbing followed by a water change, increased water flow
and critters.

I don't remember the suggested blackout (absolutely no light) period, but I
believe it's about a week. Some people have claimed this did not work for

Removal is one of the better options, remove infected leaves, wipe sides
with a paper towel, vacuum gravel and do a large water change after
scrubbing. You should be doing large water changes weekly in any event.
Really seems to help keep the Algae in check.

Dipping infected plants in Hydrogen Peroxide or 20:1 mix of water and
bleach. I found Hydrogen Peroxide useless and went for the bleach mixture.

I also added BBA eating critters SAES seem to be the best. But I'm not sure
they would like your low PH.

What's your water flow like? Do you know where your Phosphate/Iron levels
are? It's possible one of these is too low and limiting your plant growth,
which allows the Algae to thrive.

Again, all this removes the symptom not the cause. Fertilize properly
and it simply goes away. You should siphon out what you can, the rest
will die naturally upon proper fertilization.

I long touted the bleach dip and peroxide. But they don't work long
term set the plants back a LOT and are just a waste of time and plants.

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